Leonardo: The best drawing & painting app for Windows
Updated: Nov 12, 2022
Does the world need another painting app?
Today, I’m talking about Leonardo. It is a newish painting app for windows. Got a lot of potentials is doing a lot of things, right. So let’s take a look. Leonardo, like the ninja turtle. No, the app, like the turtle, was named after the painter. Leonardo da Vinci. Good to see you again, Leonardo, buddy. So the real question here is, does the world need another painting app?
I may be biased, but I say. It does. I think what Leonardo does well is that it works well on a tablet. I have an older surface pro; most of the drawing and painting apps I use are optimized with the keyboard. They don’t all like need a keyboard, but there are a lot faster, more streamlined when you’re using one.
And yeah, I know there’s a lot of on-screen shortcut apps. I’ve used those. I like some of them, but there’s something to be said for apps that are rethought from the ground up to be used with touchscreens instead of just like tacking on touch feet. After the fact. And I think that’s why I like Leonardo.
It reminds me a little bit of sketchable; sketchable is a windows app, and it was created from the ground up to be used on Windows tablets. I just like the ability to fully back my keyboard and dive into the drawing experience. Get that out of the way. It’s just nice and fun to use.
And the really nice thing about it is I never had to reach around to like pull my keyboard up. And when I do that, it feels a lot more like drawing and having fun and less like work.
What Leonardo App look like?
So if I were going to describe Leonardo in a nutshell, I’d say it falls somewhere in between sketchable and say your traditional desktop app at first glance; it looks and feels more like the traditional desktop apps that you’re used to got your tools on the sidebar.
And then you have your options along the top end. If you’re using this with a traditional setup with a keyboard and a walk home type tablet, it probably doesn’t feel all that new or interesting. But if you’re using something like Photoshop or clip studio on your tablet, PC, and then you switch over to this, you’re going to notice the difference right away, little things like brush resizing.
It’s just a matter of tapping and sliding back and forth on an icon to make your brush bigger or smaller instead of tapping out a little area and then manually entering the size of the brush you need or hitting the brush size down keyboard shortcut 47 times.
Also, the brushes have Auto Smoothing. Built right in, in fact, as I was watching the tutorial videos, the developer specifically said that he added line smoothing in because it works better with end trade pens.
How refreshing is that? To see a developer actually understands the technology that’s coming out right now that he is developing for there’s some other cool stuff in here too.
The line tool lets draw straight lines without using a shift. Key could also jump in there, set it to any angle you want to draw it.
There’s a little ruler tool in here too. So if you want lines that are about the same length you’ve got that, there’s even a built-in perspective guide.
I love this little isometric tool; even though I didn’t need the keyboard shortcuts, the app does include a little onscreen keyboard shortcut thing for your convenience.
Some other interesting tweaks make this app kind of cool.
The first is the infinite Canvas. This is great for sketching. If you sketch something out and you finish one idea, you just pan over to the side a little bit, you start sketching out the next one, you could literally do that forever, or at least until your computer runs out of Ram.
You can also define a canvas size, which is nice for finished artwork.
So I was creating a finished piece of art. I really wanted just to know what kind of canvas size I was dealing with, but I could see myself sketching with the infinite.
Also, the gradient has a preview, so you can actually see where the gradient is going and exactly how to look before you actually lay it down.
That was cool. I don’t think I’ve ever seen that before. I hope other app makers steal that because it’s really handy. The brushes, in general, are fairly customizable. They aren’t super deep, but they cover all the basics. And this seems like an area of focus over the last couple of updates for this app is adding in new brushes and adding a new functionality there.
So what are the cons? Well, this is still a very new area. It is still, in beta and because it’s so new, it doesn’t have a lot of the other features that you might be used to in some of the other drawing apps that you use. The one thing that I really personally miss with some kind of paint bucket tool, and they’re spending a lot of time on my background, drawing here, coloring in my shapes by hand.
I know a lot of you watching are gonna miss things like text tools, those aren’t in there, or any kind of vector shapes, anything like that. The other thing that would have come in really handy for what I’m doing is like a better selection tool right now. All of the selection tools are manual. You have to draw the shapes yourself.
Auto selections. The interface itself looks modern. Sleek looks really nice, even some nice animated touches here and there that make it look cool. But there is one little bit of the interface that lets sleek interface that gets in the way. And that is your color picker. The swatch that shows up at the top of the screen, it looks cool as an interface element, but it’s actually hard to tell what shade of color you’ve actually picked.
It’d be nice if this were just a solid color with no. Sometimes, I think I have the right color, but it comes out a little too light or comes out a little darker than I expected it to. It also messes with my sense of vibrancy. All of my colors came out a little more vibrant than I wanted them to. Another addition that’d be really cool to see in the color picker in some way is to see the old color that you had, comparing it directly next to the new color that you’re picking that way.
If I want to shave this, just a touch lighter. I see those things next to each other. The developer has been adding a lot to this app. In fact, when I started this process, I just sat down, booted up the app, and started drawing, and I didn’t stop to think that it’s been several months since I actually updated the app; a lot has changed.
Leonardo Experience In Windows:
So currently, Leonardo is windows only, but it is coming to the Mac. I think this works great on windows. I think one of its greatest strengths is the fact that it works so well on touchscreens in the past. Foldaway my keyboard and just draw. I think a lot of people when they use this on the Mac, are just going to see another drawing app, but it’ll still be nice to see it on another platform.
Overall. I had fun with Leonardo, like actual fun. I can’t say that about using all drawing apps on the surface. So there is a 14-day free trial. So if you want to go and check it out on a windows tablet, Check it out yourself. Let me know what you think down below in the comments, or if you have any questions, anything that I didn’t cover that would be worth knowing, let me know down there.
Download Leonardo App from Here
Watch the video tutorial and install it.